My name is Fred and I am a gay conservative living in Ottawa. This blog supports limited government, the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security, and tries to expose the threat to us all from cultural relativism, post-modernism, and radical Islam. I am also the founder of the Free Thinking Film Society in Ottawa (

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


A new term for our vocabulary...
We coined the term Greenflation back in May 2006 and revisited it at the beginning of this year. Now global recession is beginning to bite and the threat is serious, which makes the universal conspiracy of silence even more egregious. Newspapers and television commentators talk about inflation as though it were a mystery, when it is merely the outcome of deliberate policy. Green taxes filter through the economy, but in the end they are always paid by the ordinary punter. Green prohibitions, such as the prevention of development of new, realistic energy sources, will also end up being paid for by the masses, some with their lives (in the inevitable power cuts). Since the establishment are taking care not to explain it to them, people do not understand that remote policy decisions, such as building vast arrays of useless, heavily-subsidised wind turbines, always end up with a raid on their own pockets and the risk of worse. The subsidies for biofuels have led inevitably to a substantial rise in food prices, but people are too ill-informed to see the connection, because they are not being told by the media.


Anonymous bert said...

You are right,and as usual the poor & middle class are the ones being taken to the cleaners.Gore and his disciples should be brought before an inquiry and when found guilty,get the biggest sentence ever handed out to any criminal.Because these people are truly criminals and its too bad that it will take the do gooders so long to abandon ship.

10:54 AM  
Anonymous SecularLiberal said...

I am sorry, but green taxes are usually a good thing. Even if you do not believe in anthrogenic global climate change, effective policies to combat GHG emmissions are still good for society.

The problem is that people are more concerned with style over substance (ie Australia's kudos for signing Kyoto even though they will never even come close to meeting its targets and have yet to introduce any substantive).

Coal and oil are dirty fuels that release very nasty pollutants (not including GHGs) that damage our health. Further one's supply of oil can be easily restricted. The shift to alternative energy sources must be done intelligently and not merely for meeting some arbitrary goal (ie wind turbines not plugged at all into the grid, but used exclusively to pump up water so it can be used by a hydroelectric turbine).

Further, those who critise the use of bio-fuels are short sighted. Although the short-term effect of biofuels will result in higher food costs in the long-run that will not be the case. Using food crops for producing biofuel is not very effecient, but once there is a large enough market producers will find much cheaper and more effective sources of biofuels (ie algae -- high biomass, but we can not eat it).

12:18 PM  
Blogger Cranky or Just A Crank said...

SecLib, green taxes are a ridiculous idea and only hurt the poor.

If pollution is bad, then outlaw it. If we are killing the planet don't green taxes just make it a slow painful death at the hands of the people that can afford to pay the green taxes, while the poor freeze in the dark. Talk about a two tier life.

On your other points:

Bio-fuels? Are you serious? Please read a little about the energy balance in creating fuel from biologicals. It sucks and whatever gains in efficiencies that can be made will be offset by the competition with people trying to use the land to put food on the table.

The biofuel star, Brazil, got to where it is by cutting down huge swaths of rainforest and use its government take of offshore oil and Bolivian gas that it gets for next to nothing to subsidize that production. Do a carbon balance on that.

Everywhere else biofuels are just fringe applications that make sense on a small scale, but are impractical to scale up.

Algae? Isn't that just creating on pollution problem trying to chase another. Fish farming is turning out to be an ecological fiasco on the West Coast. If raising fish that are native to the region in an environment that is somewhat similar to their natural state is a mess, then your unnatural engineered green blooms will be a nightmare.

It's not short-sighted to dismiss something that is not rooted in reality.

And let's not forget that even with the subsidies given to ethanol production and the penalties put onto petroleum production (20-50% of production goes to the government off the top when it is produced, 30% of your pump price to the government in direct taxes, and don't foregt something for corporate income taxes payable on any profits on the sales) ethanol cannot compete with gasoline. There will be significant gains in efficiencies in getting usable fuel from biomass, but you just cannot make enough of it to make a difference.

Long term the only real option is nuclear - be it fission or fusion -that can keep the lights on and things moving, but that's another rant.

2:59 PM  
Anonymous Fred said...

Cranky is not as informed as he would like us to believe. Regardless of political opinion, you would actually have to read some of these carbon balance reports in order to speak as if you knew something about the subject. No disrespect to your views on taxing I think you are not as rational as you say you are. You name a few examples in support of your conclusion that biofuels are ridiculous, but anecdotal evidence alone is not necessarily proof is it?

Here is why:

Parts of northern europe grow vast amounts of biofuel and use it in district heating plants, pure electricity plants, and more modern (extremely efficient) combined heating and power plants. These plants pay a VERY low input prices for the biofuel, generating a power output price on par with wind (very subsidized) and cheap hydro, and cheaper than nuclear (we haven't even mentioned gas or coal, which are more expensive albeit due to taxation). Biofuel provides a large (25%-50%) amount of heating in these countries and a large amount of the renewable electricity generation. I think this establishes the economic soundness of the idea.

Now to move on to the carbon balance:

Biofuels are not used unless the energy output exceeds the energy input. This is common sense. Biofuels, when burned, emit carbon, which is the same carbon that plant consumed during growth. Some is left as rest matter depending on the efficiency of the combustion. So, whatever negative carbon effect you get is from the diesel and electricity used in cultivating, harvesting, and transporting the fuel. This is where the niftyness of biofuel carbon neutrality comes in. If the biofuel was not used, and we instead used coal or oil to complement it, we would have had to emit an oil equivalent of carbon into the atmosphere. Since we already took out that carbon in producing the biofuel, which we did not in producing the oil that we burned, we have gained that difference in comparison, minus the input emissions in preparing the fuel. The final balance suggests a GHG benefit from these biofuels.

This is not to say that I agree or disagree with your views on the relevance of trying to stop GHG's, just that I am defending the use of biofuels as alternatives to fossil. Sources on request if you wish.

8:21 AM  

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